Université de Neuchâtel

Belowground Chemical Signaling in Maize: When Simplicity Rhymes with Efficiency

Hiltpold, Ivan ; Turlings, Ted C. J.

In: Journal of Chemical Ecology, 2008, vol. 34, no. 5, p. 628-635

Maize roots respond to feeding by larvae of the beetle Diabrotica virgifera virgifera by releasing (E)-β-caryophyllene. This sesquiterpene, which is not found in healthy maize roots, attracts the entomopathogenic nematode Heterorhabditis megidis. In sharp contrast to the emission of virtually only this single compound by damaged roots, maize leaves emit a blend of numerous...